#63_G9 ~ Galatians 1:1 continued
Most people do not understand the distinctiveness of Paul’s message and ministry. Nearly all Christendom is focused on Peter, the eleven, and the earthly ministry of Christ, rather than Christ’s heavenly ministry that comes to us through the writings of the apostle Paul. Few believers recognize and understand the message and ministry of the apostle Paul. That’s one of the reasons we need to lay a solid foundation before we launch out into this book. There have been times when we’ve all had to UNlearn some things before we could get on to understanding and believing the truth.
Here Paul goes to Jerusalem and the Twelve to speak to them about THAT gospel he was proclaiming. Most people today assume there’s only one gospel in the Bible. How wrong! The gospel of Peter was to do with repentance, changing one’s mind about the identity of Christ and accepting Him as the Messiah. But that’s not OUR gospel, Paul’s gospel. Galatians 2:2 & 7 spells all this out. In the opening chapters of this book to the Galatians, Paul addresses this. Have you? Don’t make the mistake of confusing Peter’s gospel with Paul’s.
Acts 2:38 is a summary of Peter’s message and that of the Twelve. But Paul’s gospel, the gospel of the uncircumcision says salvation comes by belief in Christ’s death, burial and resurrection [I Corinthians 15:3-4]. It is rare today to find a church where this message is clearly presented. So don’t miss Galatians 2:7 where these two gospels are laid out side by side as TWO DIFFERENT gospels. But be sure to read about it in the King James Version of the Bible because most translations have mistranslated it. Many of the Bible translators have been guilty of imposing their own theology onto the Scriptures. And don’t think for a minute that they wouldn’t do that. They’ve certainly done it with this passage and this subject. They fail to understand that believing Israel has an earthy future while we as members of the body of Christ today have a heavenly future.
In this study we’ll look at our Lords promise to the Twelve and to Israel [Matthew 19:27-29]. Then we’ll also note the situation as it is with us. Here we find in Paul’s writings that we have a HEAVENLY future. Philippians 3:20-21 spells it out. We are told that our citizenship is in heaven. Here, in this study, I also point out that, as much as I use and enjoy the King James Version of the Bible, the translation of verse 21 does not tell us in 21st Century English what is being said. The word, “conversation” is a BAD translation! If that’s all you had to go on, not in a thousand years would you ever guess the Scripture is here speaking of our CITIZENSHIP. But that’s exactly what we find in the Greek text! The Greek word POLITEUMA means citizenship. This is where we get the word, politics. The correct translation for this word in our time would be citizenship. The good news is that, while you have an earthly citizenship in one place or another, your eternal citizenship is now heaven if you’ve accepted the gospel the apostle Paul boldly proclaimed. Our passage in Galatians 1 is telling us that it was the Lord Jesus Christ who from heaven gave Paul this very special information that had been a secret, a mystery until it was revealed to the apostle Paul.
So we’re still working on Galatians 1:1 in our study. But I hope you’ll stick with us. We’ll be moving on into this first chapter soon.